British Friendly makes income protection enhancements

Mortgage Introducer

November 15, 2021

income recovery protection

British Friendly has made several enhancements to its income protection products.

The aim is to increase flexibility so advisers can support more clients including those who can struggle to source cover such as the self-employed, those working in higher-risk occupations or those with fluctuating incomes.

The changes cover its Protect (short and long-term) and Breathing Space Income Protection product range.

The latest enhancements build on a programme of improvements following investment in new system capabilities which has included removing COVID-19 exclusions on deferred periods of four weeks or more, reintroducing Day 1 and Week 1 cover and revising its approach to underwriting occupations.

Changes launched from November 12 across all products include underwriting occupations upfront for the entire product lifecycle so that members that change occupation throughout the term of the policy do not have to be underwritten again.

Members can opt for claim benefits to be paid directly to their mortgage provider avoiding any impact on Universal Credit means-tested benefits while GP and UK residency criteria is cut to two years from three years.

Two new Guaranteed Insurability Options are being introduced to include rental and salary increases. Deferred periods on both Protect and Breathing Space are being extended by adding the options of 26 and 52 weeks. Waiver of premium will match deferred periods and members can opt to have claims paid weekly or monthly to suit their personal financial needs.

Changes to British Friendly’s Breathing Space short-term income protection include increasing the product end age to 70 from 65 and offering the same Guaranteed Insurability Options as the rest of the product range including marriage and civil partnerships, birth and adoption, new mortgages, or mortgage increases, rent rises and salary increases.

Mark Dennison of adviser firm LightBlue UK said: “Income Protection is often the most important protection product a customer can buy, so these enhancements are a welcome addition to the options advisers have at their disposal.

“Although it is common for a client to approach an adviser for Life Insurance, it is often Income Protection that is the first priority if they are of working age but it is also more complex so this extra flexibility around claims, deferred periods and more is a welcome boost.”                                                                                                               

Natalie Summerson, sales and marketing director at British Friendly, added: “The latest enhancements maintain our focus on building a more inclusive offering at a time when Income Protection is even more relevant, valuable and needed.

“Our most recent changes recognise the need for greater flexibility, not just at point of sale but throughout the entire product term as well as at claim stage.”

Sign up to our daily email